Facebook stops the creation of ‘Instagram Kids’ for children under 13 years after the controversy with the report on toxicity
The internal report revealed by the Wall Street Journal continues to bring a tail. Now it is the turn of ‘Instagram Kids’, the project that Facebook was preparing to have a Instagram focused on children under 13 years old. As announced by Adam Mosseri, head of Instagram, the company has decided to stop the development of this application for children and will instead focus on improving parental control tools.
As Mosseri explains: “We started this project to tackle an important problem that we are seeing: children have phones that are getting younger and younger, misrepresenting his age and downloading applications for those over 13 years old. “The solution was through an Instagram Kids, equivalent to Google’s YouTube Kids, but in a change of script, Facebook has decided not to continue with this route for the moment.
“The children are already on the internet”
From Instagram they continue to defend the need for a dedicated application for minors, but explain that they have decided to pause the project to get time to “work with parents, experts, legislators and regulators.”
His position happens in that “the reality is that the children are already online and we believe that developing age-appropriate experiences designed specifically for them is much better for parents than where we are today. “
Other companies such as YouTube or TikTok already have specific versions for children under 13 years of age. His idea is that this Instagram for children was aimed at tweens, ages 10-12. A version where parental permission is required to access, had no ads and offered appropriate content supervised by parents.
This work will not see the light at least as a dedicated application, but it does reveal the company’s position regarding the debate on the use that minors can make of these social networks.
One of the recent changes to Instagram has been that by default new accounts for those under 16 years of age (18 in some countries) will be created as private.
Instagram’s focus on this segment of the population can be seen as reaction to the success of TikTok among the youngest. Instagram seeks to attract these users and these measures are a fundamental issue to sustain its use. Instagram and the rest of social networks were not designed for minors, but their use among them is not something that can go unnoticed.
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